A man types away on a lap top in the middle of a bustling coffee shop. In the corner a woman reads the paper. Old friends relax and banter at a table near by. The barrista prepares the drink for the regular walking in the door.
Another man sits at home, mildly aware of the diminishing daylight through his closed blinds as he drinks himself into oblivion with the company of a blue flickering screen.
Strangers gather in large windowed rooms to sing, hear, pray, and then go home for lunch.
Others watch others outside from the windows of their second story home.
A beautiful woman cruelly snubs those who smile and make eye contact as they pass.
Another embarrassed, averts her eyes from those who might smile so as not to be snubbed.
The children meet but once, but play. They laugh. They chase each other to the end of the meadow and back. They prepare feasts of bark dust together. The little ones stare with affection at the elder ones who stare back proudly and pleased with love.
They revel in the wonder of human contact without fear, without awkwardly shifting their weight and avoiding eye contact. They are all eye contact, penetrating, loving eye contact. They are best friends for 5, 10, 30 minutes, until their parents beckon them home.
We, all of us, crave community. Whether we awkwardly seek it, pretend we are too strong to need it, or painstakingly avoid it for fear of rejection, we want it. They are not afraid to grab it right where it is in the moment. Whether their humility to ask it of each other comes from ignorance or not, it is still beautiful. It still humbles and amazes me and implores of me to seek to know those who share the air with me.
"Truly I say to you, unless you are converted and become like children, you will not enter the kingdom of heaven. Whoever humbles himself as this child, he is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. And whoever receives one such child in My name receives Me; but whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in Me to stumble, it would be better for him to have a heavy millstone hung around his neck, and to be drowned in the depth of the sea." (Jesus, as recorded in Matt 18:3-6)
"Permit the children to come to Me; do not hinder them; for the kingdom of god belongs to such as these. Truly I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child will not enter it at all." (Jesus, as recorded in Mark 10:14-15)
May we be willing to learn from little ones. May we learn to foster community where and when we find it!